Hundreds of people including the Ilfracombe town crier took to the waters at Hele Bay and Woolacombe for New Year’s Day swims.

The New Year's Day swimmers at Hele Bay. Picture: Charlie HumphriesThe New Year's Day swimmers at Hele Bay. Picture: Charlie Humphries

The Hele Bay event was its first ever New Year's Day swim and was organised by Terri Ingram of the Hele Bay Merbabes, which regularly swim in the sea.

At Woolacombe, more than 150 people took part in the annual Woolacombe Surf Lifesaving Club No Wetsuits Dip for the 20th successive year, followed by hot chocolate at the Red Barn.

At Hele, around 60 people took to the water, including Ilfracombe town crier Roy Goodwin, while many more spectators looked on.

The event was held to raise money for Barnstaple mental health charity Clarity and has so far raised £625 for it.

The first New Year's Day swim at Hele Bay in Ilfracombe. Picture: David Owen JonesThe first New Year's Day swim at Hele Bay in Ilfracombe. Picture: David Owen Jones

The Snacking Kraken café opened to donate tea, coffee and hot chocolate and some locals made cakes to sell to add to the charity total.

Terri said: "I was so overwhelmed and happy at the turn out, this is my first year of sea swimming in the winter.

"The Hele Bay Merbabes will organise a new years day swim on our beach from now on as this seems like an event that a lot of people want to be involved in, raising the funds we have for a local mental health charity made the event even more enjoyable."

The first New Year's Day swim at Hele Bay in Ilfracombe. Picture: David Owen JonesThe first New Year's Day swim at Hele Bay in Ilfracombe. Picture: David Owen Jones

The first New Year's Day swim at Hele Bay in Ilfracombe. Picture: David Owen JonesThe first New Year's Day swim at Hele Bay in Ilfracombe. Picture: David Owen Jones

The New Year's Day No Wetsuits Dip at Woolacombe, hosted by Woolacombe Surf Lifesaving Club. Picture: Jennifer StarbuckThe New Year's Day No Wetsuits Dip at Woolacombe, hosted by Woolacombe Surf Lifesaving Club. Picture: Jennifer Starbuck